Poultry Intern Phuti Masoga on “The Right Mindset”
Bervely “Phuti” Masoga’s 24-hour journey to the US in September to start his internship at Rose Acre Farms, wasn’t his first plane ride, but it was by far the longest! At Quantum Foods, first as a general worker in his in-service training and then as a supervisor, he enjoyed the opportunity to fly across South Africa on company business.
Phuti arrived well-prepared for his year abroad: He has a B.Tech degree in Animal Production from Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa’s capital city, the hands-on experience he gained during his studies, plus a half year at South Africa’s largest broiler producer.
Funded by the World Poultry Foundation through a grant to the Future Farmers Foundation in South Africa, Phuti is now learning the ropes with cage-free birds. His boss is “a great guy,” says the young South African, “he understands it’s not easy to be so far from home.” And his first impression of his new home of North Vernon, Indiana? “Quiet and friendly.”
In his free time, Phuti enjoys long-distance running. It did not take him long to spot a running group around town and attach himself to it, “I am an extroverted introvert,” he exclaims. He’s also a reader, leaning toward leadership books and politics. Of Robin Sharma’s The Leader Who Had No Title, Phuti says, “Read this book and you won’t be the same person.”
Phuti plans to return to his home province of Limpopo in a year and open a commercial layer farm. “There’s only one large commercial producer in the province; it needs a competitor!” He laments the small size of the province’s other layer operations. “Farmers don’t scale up for fear of failure,’ he says, but “failure isn’t the opposite of success, it’s a part of success.” In his view, the right mindset is more important for emerging farmers than external financing. “Start small but push your limits and think big.”
We’ll catch up with you again, Phuti, in a year. In the meantime, we wish you a terrific internship. Keep learning, keep running, keep reading, and may all your aspirations come true!
The South African interns participate on a J-1 visa exchange visitor program sponsored by the WISE Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Dyersburg, Tennessee
Ms. Frances Chisholm
Friend & Supporter of the WPF
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